By Jack Lapauve Jr – EM TV, Port Moresby
The national government is courting Maprik in East Sepik with its plans to build a new ‘Sepik’ University in the country.
Minister for Higher Education, Science, Research and Technology, Malakai Tabar visited the district to announce the government’s intentions to the people of Maprik, especially landowners of the Bainyik, Numakum and Wora.
The new university will begin as the Papua New Guinea Institute of Rural Technology (PNGIRT) and eventually acquire its full university status by 2020, Minister Tabar said.
Minister Tabar said the courses offered will centre on agriculture, health sciences (nursing and midwifery), business and accountancy, and technical trades.
Other institutions in the microscope of the national government which Minister Tabar has visited included Institute of Medical Research (IMR) in Goroka, UNRE Popondetta campus, and the Fisheries College in New Ireland.
Formalities to effect this change will take place in March, 2015 when Minister Tabar returns to sign an agreement with the landowners and East Sepik Provincial Government.
The takeover of the UNRE Maprik campus is part of a national government initiative to rescue and revitalise ‘troubled’ state institutions across the country and make them functional and operational.